U.S. Army Sniper Course Has Its First Female Graduate

by Matthew Memrick

The first woman to graduate from the U.S. Army’s Sniper Course at Fort Benning, Georgia, is a Montana National Guardswoman.

The unidentified woman enlisted in the Montana Army National Guard in December 2020. After recommendations for her “superior performance,” she moved on to the 22-week Infantry One Station Unit Training program at the Georgia Army post.

“We are extremely proud of this soldier’s achievement and recognize that this is a milestone for not only Montana, but the entire National Guard and Army,” Maj. Gen. J. Peter Hronek, the adjutant general for Montana, said in a Monday statement. 

Hronek explained the woman had to volunteer several times in reaching her goal of expert shooter. He said her work was “a demonstration of her dedication and commitment to service.”

Sniper Training A Grueling Test

Fox News reported that the unnamed soldier started the program in September. She and others go through the seven-week course to develop long-range precision fire skills and battlefield information-collection skills. The school is known for a high attrition rate.

OSUT company commander Capt. Joshua O’Neill said he and his staff were “incredibly proud” of the graduate. O’Neill related that the woman “epitomizes what it means to be an infantry soldier.” Furthermore, he finished by saying that there was no doubt that she would succeed in the sniper course. 

First, sniper school candidates learn advanced camouflage techniques, concealed movement, target detection, and range estimation.

Then, they also work on terrain utilization in their work. By the same token, they strive for intelligence preparation of the battlefield (IPB), and relevant reporting procedures.

Finally, candidates can demonstrate sniper expertise. Snipers are used in military training and conflicts to shoot targets from concealed positions or long distances.

Additionally, one sniper school leader heaped praise on the graduate. He basically said she met every standard to graduate.

Capt. David Wright said the woman came ready to learn and “physically conditioned to succeed.”

The battalion commander of the U.S. Army Sniper School added that the school wished her luck as she headed back to her unit. 

What’s Next For The Sniper Graduate?

Montana National Guard spokesperson Maj. Ryan Finnegan said the woman would join her unit in her home state. He told USA Today that her graduation was a “historic moment” and that the National Guard was proud of her achievement.

USA Today noted the unnamed woman was born and raised in Montana.